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Fine Swiss master violin by August Meinel
Fine Swiss master violin by August Meinel
Inventory No.: 4998
Provenance: Liestal
Maker: August Meinel
Length of back: 35.9 cm
Year: 1926
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Fine Swiss master violin by August Meinel, 1926

This fine master violin is an excellent and very personal work by August Meinel, who was one of the elder statesmen of modern violin making in Switzerland and ranks amongst the most interesting and influential figures in Saxonian violin making history. After many years of wandering, Meinel learned his trade from Apian-Bennewitz at the instrument making school in Markneukirchen and from different masters in his home town before coming to Liestal, where he served as the technical director and help found the Swiss violin making society. A short while later, he took over management of the society and enjoyed successes working for highly renowned instrument brokers for over 15 years. As the teacher of excellent young luthiers such as Fritz Baumgartner and Adolf H. König, who went on to become the first director of the violin making school in Brienz, Meinel had a significant impact on 20th century Swiss violin making. Around 1920, he gradually managed to find the time and occasion to focus on his own creations, producing instruments which expressed his personal high-quality standards. These pieces reflect the sum of his artisanry as a mature and experienced master and active musician whose biography includes phases of playing professionally in major orchestras in Berlin and Dresden. As a worthy representative of this phase of Meinel's oeuvre, the violin presented here immediately stands out due to the elegance of its model with broad beesting corners and the quality of its tone woods; in particular, the one-piece maple back with its splendid slightly falling flames is a self-confident sign of August Meinel's mastery. Flawlessly clean carving of the sound holes, a scroll shaped to harmonious perfection and a soft, thick coat of orange-brownish oil varnish testify to his painstaking approach down to the smallest detail. A heavy patina and interesting traces of use by proficient musicians have left their mark on the extremely attractive and partially darkened varnish which tell the story of nearly one hundred years of frequent use. This violin was in crack-free condition when it came to our workshop, where we lovingly set it up, and we now offer it as a truly exceptional piece in this price category. Its delightfully warm and radiant, mature sound effortlessly achieves the full spectrum of its timbre with an immediate response. Beautifully balanced across all strings and featuring a rich volume, this instrument allows you to play nuanced interpretations at a professional level – we warmly recommend it!

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